The Chicago White Sox found a gem in 2021 when they made the decision to call up Gavin Sheets. Between him and Jake Burger, they had two up-and-coming power hitters that could go from opposite sides of the plate.
Sheets is the big lefty that the White Sox needed for a long time. Unfortunately, they have not given him the tools to take that next step as a Major League Baseball player. He went from being so good in his role to one of the worst players on the team in short order and he deserves little blame for it.
For one, he came up as a first baseman. That is his natural position. Due to the team's inability to put together a balanced roster, however, multiple players have been out of position for the last handful of years now. Sheets is one of those.
Unfortunately, the White Sox had Sheets playing right field more often than first base by a lot. Jose Abreu was the first baseman when Sheets first came up and Andrew Vaughn took over when Abreu left in free agency.
The Chicago White Sox did not develop Gavin Sheets into a great hitter.
In 2023, Sheets took a major step backward as a hitter. He only hit 10 home runs which is his new career low. He hit more in 2021 with less than half as many games played. His slash line of .203/.267/.331 for an OPS of .599 is as bad as it gets for someone who played in 118 games.
Combine that with his bad defense in right field and you get a -1.4 WAR player. It just wasn't a good year for him along with the rest of his teammates.
Final 2023 Grade: F
Gavin Sheets had a terrible year. There is no denying it. You can look at his defensive metrics, his batting average, his OPS, his home run total, or any stat you'd like. There is nobody arguing that this year was anything other than a failure for him.
If Gavin Sheets is on the White Sox in 2024 they are really going to be a bad baseball team. This is unless he improves dramatically. The White Sox love relying on bounce-back seasons so his return is not out of the question. It is just not a good idea.